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When people start thinking about skills they would like to learn or or learn more about, one of the things that usually comes up is cooking. If this sounds like you, then you have come to the right place. This article will help you on your journey to becoming a chef.

Use a collapsible steamer basket to make the best steamed vegetables. These devices are available widely and cheaply. They can slip into almost any pot you already have and can be used for almost any vegetable you would like to enjoy. Be sure to watch your cook time to avoid getting mushy vegetables.

To reduce the fat and calories in a recipe that calls for a lot of mayonnaise, simply replace half the mayonnaise with sour cream. Since mayonnaise serves primarily a textural purpose in many of these recipes, replacing it with similarly textured sour cream gives you the same texture with a lighter, healthier taste.

In brief, learning how to cook is learning how to avoid pre-packaged foods and meals. These convenience food products, all too common today, have speed as their solitary real benefit. Home-cooked meals will always beat them in taste and cost. In most cases – even with meals that are not especially healthy – the version made in the kitchen will be healthier than the packaged version.

After you have cooked mashed potatoes, make sure that you return them to the hot pan so that they can steam for the next ten minutes. This will allow for the potatoes to dry out so that you can get a rich texture when you are applying your milk and butter.

Unleash the tremendous flavor power of Mediterranean cous-cous by using this cooking tip. Pour your dry cous-cous in a pot filled with boiling chicken stock instead of water. Mix for ten seconds, then turn off the heat and cover for five minutes. The cous-cous will absorb the tasty flavor of the chicken stock. This effect can also be achieved with vegetable or beef stock.

When shaving vegetables for dishes such as a vinaigrette or a salad, use a coarse microplane, also known as a grater or zester, to grate them into smaller pieces. The flavors of the vegetables are truly unlocked when grated with the microplane.

When you are going to fry a food, use long tongs to add food to the oil. For about five seconds, hold the food just underneath the surface of the oil and release it. By placing a food into oil this way, the exterior of the food will be sealed and it will not likely stick to the pan.

Tofu is a great source of protein that vegetarians should use to get the nutrients their body needs. Many vegetarians are lacking in protein because they are not eating meat. Tofu can be prepared in a variety of ways and really soaks up flavors so it can be served as a meal or as a quick snack.

If you are making a dish where you will need thin strips of meat (fajitas, Chinese) freeze your meet for about 20 minutes before cutting. This will allow you to slice the meat very thinly with ease. You may think this sounds a little strange, but it will definitely do the trick.

If you decide to take a shortcut and prepare boxed foods, follow the directions exactly. The mac and cheese never fails to turn out wonderfully when you do it right. Then the smooth cheese sauce melts evenly over the noodles. A simple serving dish and spoon are all you need to serve dinner. Add some extra flavor with pepper.

Cook small quantities of food at higher temperatures for a lesser amount of time. Bite-size cookies only need a few minutes in the oven if you put it a higher temperature because there is only a small surface area to cover and it will not take long to cook. This way you will be able to enjoy your meal in minutes.

When you are seasoning meat and fish, make sure you season it evenly. You should always sprinkle the herbs and spices. This will ensure that they do not clump in one area. You want your meat and fish to taste the very same from the first to last bite.

When it comes to cooking, be sure that you are not using ingredients that are obviously bad for your health or the health of others. This is important because your diet is one of the most important ways that you can help to control your own health and well being.

When baking cookies, make sure to drop the batter in thick spoonfulls onto the cookie sheet. Then, refrigerate for at least 20 minutes before baking. This reduces the flattening process that can happen when the baking process is taking place. When the edges are brown, remove the cookies from the oven, and you will be rewarded with a soft center.

Cook fish on a plank! Use a cedar plank to replicate the taste you get in expensive restaurants right on your campfire. Clean your freshly caught fish and split them open so they are less than one inch thick. Tack the fish to the board and position it beside the campfire so it absorbs the heat of the fire but is not so close that the whole thing catches fire!

Olive oil is any cook’s best friend. It is a very versatile ingredient and is, opposed to what many people think, not limited to just Italian cuisine. Stir fried dishes and any dish in which you would ordinarily use butter can be made better tasting and healthier when olive oil is used.

As you can see, learning to cook is not as hard as it may seem. By following the tips listed in this article, you can learn to become the best chef you possibly can. Your friends and family will appreciate the great meals you prepare for them by following these tips.

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